Mercy Midwives Birthing Home is the birth center through Mercy In Action that I’m interning at here in Olongapo. Though Mercy In Action has initiated, successfully operated and turned over many birth centers in the last 21 years here in the Philippines, this particular birth center has only been open for just over a year. Word is still getting out. The first week that we were here, I helped Lanie, a Philippino friend and employee of Mercy Birthing Home, spread the word even more. We went out, flyers in hand, pounding the pavement in the afternoons. Mercy In Action is reaching out to several communities; the muslim community, the ladies who work in the market selling fresh meat and produce and the “bar girls” or prostitutes. So far, these efforts have been successful and a we’ve seen a few women come to the birth center for prenatal appointments. We pray that they will continue to come and that the birth center would be a safe, loving haven for them to bring their baby into the world at… for free nonetheless!
The Muslim community within Olongapo… yes, the Muslim community lives within “Holy Spirit Village” and many houses are on Holy Spirit Drive.
Isabella joined us to the Muslim community and enjoyed the benefits of a Halo Halo too… a frozen ice drink with all sorts of randomness to it… beans, corn, jello cubes, coconut, taro root, a little sugar, evaporated milk and shaved ice. Sounds gross…. but it’s amazingly good! The lady making the Halo Halo is 5 months pregnant.
Lanie handing out flyers and talking with women at the market… over delicacies such as pigs ears and chicken feet.